Detroit Tigers News

Detroit Tigers: Who fills open 40-man roster spot?

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DETROIT, MI - APRIL 25: Blaine Hardy #36 of the Detroit Tigers pitches in the ninth inning during a MLB game against the Seattle Mariners at Comerica Park on April 25, 2017 in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers defeated the Mariners 19-9. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - APRIL 25: Blaine Hardy #36 of the Detroit Tigers pitches in the ninth inning during a MLB game against the Seattle Mariners at Comerica Park on April 25, 2017 in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers defeated the Mariners 19-9. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Tigers
DETROIT, MI – APRIL 25: Blaine Hardy #36 of the Detroit Tigers pitches in the ninth inning during a MLB game against the Seattle Mariners at Comerica Park on April 25, 2017 in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers defeated the Mariners 19-9. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images) /

The Triple-A Toledo Mud Hens have nine pitchers on their roster who are not on the Tigers 40-man. Two of them have big league experience, and have a good chance of being recalled to take VerHagen’s place on the 40-man roster.

Victor Alcantara

Alcantara was initially acquired by the Tigers from the Angels in the Cameron Maybin trade. He made six appearances in the Motor City last year, tossing 7.1 innings and giving up seven runs with a 5:4 K:BB ratio. He’s looked solid in Toledo this year, with a 3.24 ERA and a 7:1 K:BB ratio in 8.1 innings. The Tigers have given him a chance before, so it’s possible he’s added to the 40-man to make it easier to call him up.

Louis Coleman

Coleman last pitched in the big leagues in 2016, throwing 48 innings of 4.69 ball for the Dodgers. He has 225.1 big league innings under his belt, with a 3.51 ERA and a 9.2 K/9. The veteran will likely get a chance to pitch in Detroit at some point this season, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see him nab a 40-man spot now that one is available. He has a 2.84 ERA at Toledo this year.

Kevin Comer

A long-time Astros farmhand, Comer was signed as a minor league free agent this offseason. He has yet to make his big league debut, but has looked good in a few appearances at Toledo. He is one of the least likely candidates to grab the 40-man spot at the moment, but is good insurance in case more injuries hit the Tigers.

Bryan Garcia

Garcia is currently the 16th ranked prospect in the Tigers farm system, according to MLB Pipeline. The right-hander is currently on the 7-day DL, but has accelerated rapidly through the Tigers system and should be contributing in their bullpen in short order. He posted a stellar 2.13 ERA in 55 innings last season. While it won’t be right away, don’t be surprised to see Garcia in the big leagues in 2018.

A.J. Ladwig

Ladwig is organizational depth, a player whose primary role is to fill out minor league rosters. Drafted in the 11th round by the Tigers, he reached Triple-A Toledo in 2017. He posted a 6.30 ERA in two starts there, but has fared much better in 2018 with a 3-0 record and a 2.16 ERA. Still, don’t expect to see Ladwig in the big leagues barring multiple injuries.

Grayson Long

Long, like Garcia, is on the 7-day DL down in Toledo. He is the 15th ranked prospect in Detroit’s system, and projects to be a solid end of the rotation starting pitcher. With a future in the rotation and a current stint on the DL, Long will not be seeing the 40-man roster for quite a while.

Mark Montgomery

Montgomery, like Ladwig and Comer, is a minor league veteran. He threw in the Yankees farm from 2011-2016, and spent 2017 with the Cardinals Triple-A affiliate. He had a great year, going 5-1 with a 2.43 ERA. He’s off to a strong start with Toledo, with a 3.60 ERA and eight strikeouts in just five innings of work. He has a career 11.5 K/9 in 357.1 minor league innings, so there is definitely some intrigue here. It’d be surprising to see him get the 40-man spot right now, but he should get a chance in Detroit before too long.

Josh Turley

Another org guy, Turley started the season at Double-A but was promoted to Triple-A recently. He does not have the pedigree or the minor league numbers to warrant consideration for a big league job at this time.

Paul Voelker

We ranked Voelker as one of the many ‘under-the-radar‘ Tigers prospects to keep an eye on. So far in 2018, Voelker has only surrendered one run in five innings of work. He’s only thrown eight career innings at Triple-A however, so don’t expect him in the big leagues until September at the earliest.

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